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Eagle wins Nat Geo Pictures of the Year Contest

Posted on Mar 7, 2023

National Geographic announces winner of its Pictures of the Year Contest ­– the battle of the bald eagles

The Pictures of the Year contest is tied to the brand’s annual Pictures of the Year list and invites aspiring photographers from across the UK to submit their best image from 2022 under the categories of: Nature, People, Places and Animals.

Selected from 5,000 entries, Karthik Subramaniam’s “Dance of the Eagles” was named the grand-prize winner. The software engineer’s passion for photography and unmoving perseverance allowed him to capture the bald eagles battling for prime position on a tree in the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve in Alaska.

“Every year in November, hundreds of bald eagles gather at Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve near Haines, Alaska, to feast on salmon. I visited there last two Novembers to photograph them,” says Subramaniam. “Studying their behaviour patterns helped me anticipate some of their actions. For example, when an eagle drags salmon to a dry spot, other eagles in the area would inevitably fly there to claim their share, and that leads to chaotic action. They also seemed to have some favourite spots to hang out, and usually, commotion ensues when an eagle wants an already occupied spot. This photo was taken during one such commotion.”

© Karthik Subramaniam, Grand Prize Winner, Pictures of the Year 2022
A bald eagle arrives to steal a perch on a tree log that offers a strategic view of the shoreline at the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve in Alaska. © Karthik Subramaniam, Grand Prize Winner, Pictures of the Year 2022

The spoils of Subramaniam’s victory see his image featured in the May issue of National Geographic magazine alongside a six-month subscription to the magazine.

Nine other photos were selected as honourable mention winners, which will feature on National Geographic’s ‘Your Shot’ Instagram page. All will receive a six-month digital subscription to the magazine.

Pictures of the Year, Honourable Mentions:

  • Alex Berger
  • An Li
  • Bruce Taubert
  • Eric Esterle
  • Rhez Solano
  • Riten Dharia
  • Tayfun Coksun
  • Tihomir Trichkov
  • W. Kent Williamson

For more information and a list of all ten winners and their winning images, please visit

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